The Acme Hotel today announced that it will become the first hotel in America to make Google Glass available to its guests. You reserve the item in advance, pick it up on check-in, and, for an hour or two, wear a computer on your face.
It will be quite interesting to see how it all plays out at the Acme in particular. This is, by any measure, a pretty cool place to spend time. The Berkshire Room, one of Chicago's Best New Bars, is already quite a scene. It's hard to say what kind of stir a lot of new Google Glass will cause.
Here are a few hypotheses:
It will be a convivial blend of cocktails and technology. People will embrace the hip new computer wear, compliment strangers on how stylish they look in Glass, demonstrate the wonders of the device, pass it around, laugh, and buy the next round. The Berkshire Room will be hailed as a sign of a new way to socialize. People will be so happy to have brought their computers out to the bar.
Everyone will be even more distracted and withdrawn. Going out in public in 2014 can be a pretty maddening experience if you want some time away from your phone. Everyone in the bar is probably looking at one already. It's rude to just "interrupt" someone busy Instagramming a cocktail. In fact, you may find yourself staring at your own phone, trying to figure out how to kill time without staring at your phone.
Nothing will change. This one's a little harder to imagine—even if the new perk doesn't prove to be all that popular, there's at least the odd chance that a pair of Glass will fall into a beer, or that a bartender will hush everyone up to holler about who left their hardware on the bar. Maybe things will get out of hand and someone will get decked—it is Chicago, after all. We could be known as the city where you can get Google Glass smacked right off your nose. These days, it seems, you never know what kind of Glasshole you're going to meet.